COMM 486M - Strategy and Integrated Decision Making

COMM 486M is an integrative capstone course bringing together multiple business disciplines in an applied, interactive and engaged learning environment in which students from all options recombine and study/solve complex business and societal strategic issues. Each course team is comprised of students from multiple business specializations and tasked with combining their specialized knowledge on integrated, multi-disciplinary cases or live client challenges, to make strategic decisions. The students leverage content from their options, combining and applying it with other functional areas to solve complex problems.

As COMM 101 sets the stage and launches high school students into the university environment and Sauder culture, COMM 486M launches Sauder graduates into society and their careers. COMM 486M may be used to satisfy the COMM 49x requirement in Year 4.

Four sections will be offered in 2015W after a successful and well-received run of one pilot section in 2014W that included 50 students from several options. All sections will be taught in the Sauder Learning Labs in a workshop-style format with each section serving a different client.


  • to equip Sauder graduates to have a positive impact on society.
  • to provide an experiential course that tackles integrated decision-making across business disciplines, in the context of:
    • ambiguity and messy, incomplete information;
    • ethical dilemmas;
    • sustainability and shared values;
    • creative problem solving, innovation and entrepreneurship;
    • multiple, competing agendas and stakeholders;
    • time-pressure and team based working;
    • learning from failure.
  • to develop active listening and critical reasoning skills, and a willingness to change initial viewpoints based on new insights, and a desire to find win-win solutions.
  • to develop culturally aware, empathetic citizens and future leaders for business and society.

Learning objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  • work collaboratively and effectively in multi-cultural and multi-disciplinary teams.
  • apply working knowledge of the main disciplines of business, as learned throughout the BCom program to solve real world problems for corporate, community or social enterprise clients.
  • recognize and navigate ethical challenges and develop advanced decision-making, leadership and communication skills.
  • address competing agendas and views to work through shared values to win-win scenarios; involving alumni and industry partners.

Assessment summary

  • individual assignments
  • in-class activities and participation
  • group project
  • integrated cases
  • no exams 

Prerequisite: Starting in 2016W, COMM 390 and COMM 395 will be prerequisites to COMM 486M, however, during 2016W and 2017S both prerequisites will be waived for students who have not yet completed them. In 2017W and subsequent sessions, both prerequisites will be strictly enforced.

Course credits:

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